Improve Wheelchair Posture and Independence

December 21, 2018
Sit Straight infographic

Download a printable poster here.

How Sit-Straight works—Good support starts with a stable base

Sit-Straight Cushions start with a convex base design that overcomes the problem of a sagging wheelchair sling seat. Most positioning or therapeutic cushions require a flat seat base for optimal function. If placed on a sagging sling seat, the cushion can buckle or tilt, ultimately negating the intended beneficial effects. The Sit-Straight Cushion’s convex base fills the sag without requiring an additional seating device and without raising the height of the sitting surface while positioning the user in a proper posture.

But a level base alone doesn’t solve seating problems—traditional level sitting surfaces cause the pelvis to rest in a neutral or posterior pelvic tilt. After a short time, the user's buttocks slide forward on the seat, resulting in sacral sitting. Risks associated with sacral sitting include skin breakdown at the coccyx and thoracic regions, falls from the wheelchair, poor sitting tolerance, and loss of functional abilities.

Wedge top improves posture

Sit-Straight Cushions are topped with a wedge cushion that helps to limit forward sliding by keeping the hips positioned slightly lower than the knees, promoting an anterior pelvic tilt and subsequent upright sitting posture. This improved sitting posture decreases pressure on the sacrum and coccyx, and encourages improved breathing, better head control, and better positioning for self-feeding.

With the Sit-Straight Cushion, patients sit in a proper posture without the tendency to slide forward in their chairs, allowing participation in self-feeding, self-care, and recreational activities. This cushion is also beneficial to caregivers, as it frees them from continually repositioning patients and using restraints to keep patients from falling out of wheelchairs.

AliMed offers a variety of Sit-Straight styles, starting with the economical Sit-Straight Basic Cushion, which gives support for those who do not need specialized care for pressure relief or shear reduction. Sit-Straight Coccyx Relief adds a dished area in the back of the cushion for pressure relief at the base of the spine, while the Sit-Straight T-Gel Cushion's top layer of checkerboard T-Gel offers overall shear reduction and pressure redistribution.

Sit-Straight Wedge with Pommel Cushion assists with hip abduction and provides a gentle reminder to the individual who fidgets out of position on other wheelchair cushions and Sit-Straight Release Pommel Cushion features a pommel that conveniently drops out of the way for transfers. The Stay-Put Sit-Straight Cushion w/Coccyx Relief Cushion is hinged in the center and securely fastened under the sling seat using plastic snap clips, staying put when the wheelchair is folded.

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